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Old 09-18-2010, 01:22 PM
 
Location: Kirkwood, DE and beautiful SXM!
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Our hardwood floors are finished and we need to put something on the staircases. DH likes treads and I like the runners. Does anyone have a preference or do you have one and wish you had the other? Just looking for opinions right now. Thanks.
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Old 09-18-2010, 01:33 PM
 
Location: in here, out there
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I have carpet. That makes them safer if you fall down them, plus the cushioning reduces the impact on your body as you go up and down.
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Old 09-18-2010, 11:14 PM
 
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I think the treads look hideous, but it is strictly a matter of personal taste.
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Old 09-18-2010, 11:28 PM
 
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Totally agree. Treads are ugly. Tell your husband that he doesn't have a say in the matter.

Go with carpeting, runner, or leave the wood bare. I like bare wood steps because they're super easy to keep clean.
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Old 09-19-2010, 05:05 AM
 
Location: Kirkwood, DE and beautiful SXM!
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Thanks for your replies. DH wants some of the wood to show; our stairs are slippery so something has to go on them. I think a runner.
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Old 09-19-2010, 05:37 AM
 
Location: Amelia View
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We've had all four: bare, treads, runners, full carpeting. All four have their places depending on the look you want to achieve and the aesthetics.

Pros and cons in a nutshell--

Bare stairs: Pros - easy to clean with dustpan and brush or vacuum, look crisp and simple. Cons - noisiest, look out of place and bulky if surrounded by rooms that have wall-to-wall carpeting. The visual of a long "run" of continuous wood can be either a pro or a con.

Treads: Pros - easy to clean, softens the visual long run of wood yet allows the wood to shine. Cons - can appear "choppy" to the eye if the color of the wood and the color of the treads are in high contrast with each other.

Runners: Pros - extends the eye up the stairway for a smooth visual, allows some of the wood to remain in view, can "shorten" or "lengthen" the appearance of the stairway (depending on the color(s) of the runner). Cons - not as easy to clean as above (carpeted crease between step and riser is a great collector of dust and dirt).

Full carpeting: Pros - allows the stairway to blend with nearby carpeted rooms, quietest of all. Cons - hardest to clean (step/riser crease, around the base of the balusters), may look odd if surrounded by rooms that are not carpeted.

As examples:
One of our houses was was a 1920s gambrel with a pine wood floor in the foyer, and the L-shaped stairway had been painted all white (steps, risers, rails, balusters). Had the stairway been left in natural pine we would have left them bare. But all the white was "blinding", so we added treads to soften the white.

Our current house has an oak stairway, but it's fully carpeted. Makes sense since most of the rooms around it are wall-to-wall carpet. However, we're tearing out the wall-to-wall and putting in wood floors. That means we'll also take the carpet off the stairs and use either treads or a runner -- that decision hasn't been made yet - it's impossible to visualize until there's all wood on the floors and stairs and then we'll be able to see whether we need to "chop up" the flow with treads or smooth the flow with a runner.
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Old 09-19-2010, 02:27 PM
 
Location: Kirkwood, DE and beautiful SXM!
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Thanks for the pros and cons list. I hate to vacuum both staircases and am trying to get away from as much carpeting as possible. However, I am afraid that someone will fall down the steps. Since we have a dog and a cat, the hair can be impossible in carpet. I think we will probably go with the runner.
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Old 09-19-2010, 05:07 PM
 
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Bare floors for sure especially with having nice new floors. Runners are very dated and treads i agree look awful.
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Old 09-22-2010, 06:11 AM
 
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I agree that wood stairs can be slippery and dangerous. We had wood stairs in our old house and chose a runner. We used one that was an oriental rug pattern to hide everything. It was super easy to keep clean with our vacuum attachments-used the crevice tool in the crease. The nice thing about the patterned runner is that it is supposed to look worn so it will look good for a long time (we still own that house and are renting it out).
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Old 09-22-2010, 06:29 AM
 
Location: Kirkwood, DE and beautiful SXM!
12,053 posts, read 17,707,039 times
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I have looked at lots of patterns and unfortunately, I always go to gaudy. We selected a really nice pattern but DH likes the darker blue, which will show every bit of dog and cat hair, so we are really looking carefully at what we select. An oriental pattern might work. Thanks.
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